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Rigid Z Axis Upgrade and Repair!


#1

Hey everyone,

Just wanted to show off my little Z axis repair I did for the all too common issue that plagues the Z axis on the Ridgid router.

Following another post on here I made a trip to Lowes and purchased:

2X Hillman 5/8 x 1/2 x 1/2 Nylon Spacers
2X Hillman 5/16 x .140 x 1/32 Nylon Flat Washers
1X Southwire 3/16in - 7/8in Step Bit (found in electrical section NOT the tool section, there are Step bits in the tool section but they are over $40 and this one was $30.)
1X Tube of Gorilla two part Epoxy clear

First I removed the Z-Axis from the router by removing the C-Clip with a flat head or if you have it a pair of ring pliers and unscrewed it from the base.

After removing the retaining clip from the thread I drilled the Clip out on each side with the step bit until the Nylon spacers (they fit perfectly around the thread of the Adjustment knob) fit into the retaining clip on both sides, being careful to only drill far enough to leave a small lip for the spacer to rest on but not enough to impact the functionality of the orange release button. I would highly recommend using a drill press to make sure your ledge is perfectly flat but I did it with a drill gun and managed to do it perfectly. When drilling out the clip, do it in short burst so you don’t accidentally drill to far or cause any irreversible damage.

Once I was sure both sides were flat and straight, I test fitted it with the threaded adjustment knob and then mixed up my epoxy. I do not recommend putting epoxy on the part of the spacer that is inserted into the retaining clip as the epoxy will expand when it cures and this could cause the part to become misaligned or worse the epoxy could seep into the part making the orange button non functional.

After allowing the Epoxy to set for about 30 minutes, I inserted the threaded adjustment knob and made sure the retaining clip was straight and that the play was gone. I will now let the epoxy cure for 24 hours then rebuild the router placing a nylon flat washer on the bottom to remove any up and down play.

If everything is done right you should have a Z-axis with little to no play at all resulting in more accurate cuts. The best part is if any of this fails, the process can be repeated over and over again.

I have taken some close up high res images of the finished part for you all to see. With the way it is set up, the router should have no issues getting through a 3/4 inch piece of wood. With this repaired part I will attempt to make the Meticulous Z-axis which I believe to me a more permanent solution.

Hope this helps anyone who might have been confused about the other thread or that just wanted to see more close up pictures of what it should look like.

Please feel free to ask me any questions, I should be testing this part in the next few days but I have no doubt it will make a world of difference.

Thanks


#2

It seems as if mine would bottom out if it were set up this way. My mechanism with the orange button goes all the way down and bottoms out (virtually). I am, however, more willing to put a nylon bushing at the top than the metal one that I’ve seen you used before. I would like to see the progress on your meticulous z!